For an industry that thrives on sensory experiences and relies heavily on personal touch and physical treatments, the beauty industry is boldly venturing into a new realm — the metaverse.
This emerging virtual world seeks to revolutionize the conventional beauty experience by seemingly eradicating the ability to feel, smell, or engage in physical interactions. However, this endeavor is not merely a strategy to entice consumers into buying digital assets. Instead, it represents an effort to captivate consumers with immersive experiences that ultimately drive the purchase of tangible, physical products.
The latest beauty brand to make its foray is Laneige, embracing the virtual realm to showcase its newest collection through a partnership with virtual store-building platform Obsess, an experiential commerce company.
Through their recently unveiled virtual store, Laneige customers can delve into its skincare collections in environments such as a cloud, underwater and a carousel. Within the virtual space, a particular room named Laneige Lab invites customers to immerse themselves in a comprehensive exploration of the brand’s skincare product ingredients.
Julien Bouzitat, the chief marketing officer of AmorePacific U.S., Laneige’s parent company, said that the virtual stores had been meticulously crafted to serve as a compelling tool for customer engagement. These immersive virtual experiences aim to captivate shoppers by showcasing Laneige’s unique scientific expertise and a wealth of digital content.
In addition, the virtual store assists customers in choosing the right product to meet their specific skincare needs. This includes highlighting popular offerings such as its Water Sleeping Mask and Lip Sleeping Mask, ensuring customers can find the ideal solutions for their skincare requirements.
To generate even more excitement, Laneige has joined forces with actress Sydney Sweeney. Within one of the virtual store’s rooms, customers can explore exclusive videos and photos that prominently feature Sweeney, creating a compelling association between the White Lotus actress and the Laneige brand.
During the immersive experience, visitors can engage with interactive features, including a skincare quiz that tailors personalized product recommendations based on their responses. Furthermore, a scavenger hunt is available, enticing participants with the chance to win two complimentary Laneige products by making a purchase from the brand.
Neha Singh, the founder and CEO of Obsess, emphasized the significance of the data collected by the company, which clearly demonstrates the effectiveness of virtual stores in enhancing customer engagement and influencing purchasing behavior.
Before its partnership with Laneige, Obsess worked with brands like Fendi, Crocs, Coach, Dior, Alo and Prada Beauty, assisting them in crafting distinctive 3D eCommerce spaces.
In a recent development, Obsess unveiled their self-service store builder named Ava by Obsess. The subscription-based service aims to empower brands to construct and personalize their own virtual stores, providing them with the flexibility to incorporate a wide array of features and functionalities to create a truly unique shopping experience.
Through Ava by Obsess, brands can enhance their virtual stores with features such as easy product integration, branded avatars, interactive content and seamless integration of social media elements. The annual subscription provides brands with a convenient and versatile platform to craft immersive shopping experiences tailored to their needs.
Alongside the virtual store experience, Laneige has actively showcased its latest Water Bank Blue Hyaluronic Collection, featuring a comprehensive range of skincare essentials, including cleansers, toners and various other products.
Charlotte Tilbury, a beauty brand from the U.K., leaped into the virtual realm in 2021 by introducing its “Shop with Friends” shopping experience. The concept enables customers to replicate the in-store visit from the comfort of their own homes, guided by a virtual avatar named “Magic Charlotte.” Within this virtual store, customers can freely explore the offerings, make purchases, receive tailored advice and product suggestions, participate in live events featuring Charlotte Tilbury and other notable guests, and even access makeup and skincare tutorials.
Through implementing its virtual 3D “Shop with Friends” solution, Charlotte Tilbury introduced a feature that allows customers to invite others to join them in a virtual store experience. With a simple click of a button, customers could and still can send friends and family an email or text containing a link to the virtual store.
The video feature enables participants to see and hear each other as they navigate the virtual environment individually or collaboratively, akin to the multiplayer experience found in video games. Users can display a live video feed of the other participants on the side of their screen or toggle it off to fully immerse themselves in the virtual store’s full-screen mode.
“The new Shop with Friends feature is a hugely innovative addition to our next-generation online experience. We have always been a digital-first brand and by launching this new feature within our virtual store, we are truly operating as an omnichannel business to bring our customers rich and immersive experiences whenever and wherever they meet the brand,” said Charlotte Tilbury Chief Growth and Technology Officer Corinne Suchy at the time of the announcement.
In this digitally-driven era, consumers are more inclined to explore and purchase through digitized avenues. The approach not only enhances convenience but also addresses the limitations of traditional online shopping, where customers cannot physically interact with the products before purchasing. By incorporating virtual experiences that closely simulate real-world interactions, virtual beauty shopping stores bridge this gap, providing consumers with a heightened sense of confidence in their purchasing decisions.
Furthermore, virtual beauty shopping stores offer additional benefits such as personalized product recommendations, tailored advice from beauty experts, and access to exclusive events and tutorials. These features create a sense of exclusivity and engagement, fostering a deeper connection between the brand and the consumer.
As consumers continue to embrace the digitized landscape, virtual beauty shopping stores can serve as a powerful tool for brands to captivate and retain their target audience. By seamlessly blending the allure of virtual experiences with the tangible appeal of real-life products, these innovative platforms unlock new opportunities for beauty brands to showcase their offerings and drive sales in a dynamic and immersive manner.
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